Doomsday Kingdom #1 Review

After the long wait, the physical release of the first issue of Doomsday Kingdom has finally came. Youtube personality and comic writer Ronny Haze has been working on this title along with artist James Milne for a few years now and their dream came to reality with this issue. Ronny Haze hosts a channel called Make A Path Presents where he covers The Walking Dead (the comic series and the TV adaptation), Fear The Walking Dead, Game Of Thrones and much more. There are not many Youtubers out there that hosts a channel and also creates a comic so you are getting a huge bag of content on his channel.

I have issue #1 of Doomsday Kingdom and here is my review on the first issue.

First i would like to say that the first 3 pages set the tone for how the rest of the issue will be. The first page, the main character has an arrow that is already pierced through his wrist taken out. But next, we get flashback scenes leading up to what happened on the first and last page and not too many comics begin their series with a flashback scene so i liked it. From there onwards, the main character travels with a prisoner and we get a story between those two along with what happened between those two and why the main character tied him to the feeding post for the zombies (which are named creeps in this comic) to devour him alive.

After that, the main character goes to a house that is trapped with a few zombies inside but it was a distraction as the other group attacked him with arrows. As the main character takes down the zombies, the enemies continue their assault and we finally know how he got the arrow on his wrist.

Another character wearing riot gear mixed with camouflage comes to the main character’s rescue as he killed the enemies that attacked him. At the end of the issue, the man who saved the main character asks him “The Rider. WHO ARE YOU?” as this ending left myself wanting to know more behind the character and the story.

Overall, i love this issue. This felt very different than the normal post-zombie outbreak world. Right from the beginning, we have been hinted that the world has been like this for many years and that the characters were very accustomed to everything that was going on. This issue is jam packed with action from start to finish and it has me excited for the next issue. I also did like how the suspense was built on how the first page happened as it did not felt forced or rushed at all. The Artwork is also great as the colors and shades and shadows blended very well in each page. I recommend for everyone to read this because it is a completely different take on the zombie genre. Doomsday Kingdom releases digitally first before the print version releases.

Ronny Haze is on twitter @RONNYHAZE and you can find him on YouTube as Make A Path Presents. I have also interviewed him on The Wrestling Court Episode 85 which you can listen to right here.

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Marvel Comics Legacy & Secret Empire Omega #1 Spoilers: Who Is The Last Steve Rogers Standing & Who Is Captain America?

Marvel Comics Legacy spoilers follow for Secret Empire Omega #1.

Secret Empire doesn’t appear to be over with Secret Empire Omega #1. The book ends with…

idolized figment of Kobik the sentient Cosmic Cube’s imagination Steve Rogers remaining Captain America while real yet corrupted Steve Rogers remains jailed as Hydra Supreme.

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Top 10 The Walking Dead Comics you should read

I have been a fan of The Walking Dead comic series dating back to the end of 2005 and look at where it is now. It has created a very widespread fanbase across the world whether if it is the TV Show or the Comic Series. Today, i count down the top 10 The Walking Dead comics you should read.

10. Vol 24- Life and Death (Issues 139-144;2015)

I kick off the countdown with this story arc that features the leader of The Whisperers Alpha’s views on how the living should be during the post apocalypse vs Rick Grimes views. During this Story arc, Michonne Returns since last being seen during All Out War, Dwight takes control of The Saviors, Carl and Lydia becomes an couple and much more. But the biggest moment that happened in this story arc is when Alpha took off her walker skin and snuck in the Alexandria Safe Zone during an festival and proceed to kill an total of 12 people (4 each from ASZ, The Kingdom, The Hilltop, and the Sanctuary) and put their heads on tall spikes on The Whisperers’ border. Among of those killed, the two biggest were Rosita (who was also 8 months pregnant with Eugene’s child) and Ezekiel.

9. Vol 1- Days Gone Bye (issues 1-6; 2003-2004)

The First Story arc from the beginning gave everyone an feel of what is bound to happen in the future. After being shot and being put in a coma, Rick Grimes wakes up a few months later to find out that the world he knew is no longer the same as zombies have taken over the planet. Along the way, he meets Morgan, Glenn, Carol and more characters as he searched for his family. When he meets up with his son Carl Grimes and his wife Lori Grimes, he finds out that her and Shane were having an affair. By the end of this story arc, Rick and Shane had a fight which leads to Carl Grimes Killing Rick’s best friend Shane.

8. Vol 10-What We Become (issues 55-60; 2008)

So some interesting things happened in this volume. First, you see that Rick and Abraham are either going to absolutely hate each other and probably kill each other, or they are going to both go mad holding hands and be best friends. Hot and cold with these two. Their personalities are both dominating ones, so they aren’t getting along all that well. You also get to learn a little more about Abraham’s past and why he is the way he is. Like what happened to his family; which, as it is expected, is really stinkin’ sad. The third thing is that the group finally gets to deal with a legendary herd they kept hearing about from Abraham. And I am talking like two thousand little roamers. Like that’s insane. How have they not come across a herd yet is really the question at the time. Also, this arc had the scene where a bunch of bandits tried to rape carl and attack Rick and Abe (Remember that scene on the season 4 Finale?), Maggie’s suicide attempt, and the return of Morgan who is a different person from what he was before.

7. Vol 8- Made To Suffer (issues 43-48; 2007-2008)

In this volume, we finally see how cruel The Governor can be. The reader knows he is evil, but may not have understood how evil until now. Not only does the reader see his only motive is pure greed, the reader sees that he will truly stop at nothing to get what he wants. Even when The Governor has lost countless people from his side, both by death and the fact that they no longer wish to fight for him, he will not stop. His greed was his tragic flaw. A few themes of this volume are cliffhangers, distrust, sanity, revenge and greed. The theme of cliffhangers works because this volume is not only the end of the volume, but the end of the first compendium. It ends after everyone has fled the prison. The entire group is separated. No one even knows who all has been killed and who has safely escaped. The theme of distrust appears for the people of Woodbury. They’ve no idea how evil The Governor truly is. They believed that he was leading them into army against savages when in reality, they were good people with children. The theme of sanity arrives when we witness The Governor’s rampage, with also is under the themes of revenge and greed. Some highlights include the death of The Governor, Tyreese, Judith, Billy and Lori. More characters died in this story arc than any other after this one.

6. Vol 21- All Out War: Part 1 (issues 115-120; 2013-2014)

If you are looking forward to season 8 this coming fall as i am writing this, this story arc is a good start since AOW part 1 and 2 will be season 8. Rick, Jesus and Ezekiel come together with their 3 communities to fight against Negan and The Saviors in this action packed story. Some highlights includes Negan killing David, the bombing of Alexandria, the death of Ezekiel’s tiger Shiva, zombies flooding into The Sanctuary, and the bait and switch with an zombified Holly. This is a must read for readers who would want to know what the war was like before the TV adaptation airs. Also, Issue 115 has the second most variants out of every issue and it was the highest selling comic of 2013.

5. Vol 16- A Larger World (issues 91-96; 2011-2012)

Here on this arc, we are introduced to Jesus. He is a scout for The Hilltop. He is very fast and he can catch anybody by surprise. Rick and the survivors thought that Alexandria was the only community left but Jesus told them that their world is about to get larger. He introduces them to The Hilltop and they find out that although they have much more food and crops there, it comes with a price as The Saviors takes half of their supplies every month. Rick and the group vows to Gregory (their leader) to take Negan and The Saviors down but little does he know, that will cost one of the groups lives.

4. Vol 5- The Best Defense (issues 25-30; 2006)

In this volume, the story moves from a simmering internecine struggle to a more dangerous external conflict for the first time, as the sudden appearance of a helicopter leads Rick, Glenn, and Michonne to the doorstep of another survivor camp. This group is led by a man named Philip, who has styled himself as The Governor. This new player in the story is quickly established as certifiably insane, as well as the extreme example of securing authority through the “might makes right,” do-anything approach to keeping people safe that Rick has been struggling with up until now. As the three protagonists begin their ordeal in the Governor’s hands, the rest of the group back at the prison wait anxiously for their return, with no idea that a new, non-zombie threat is now bearing down on them. This was an arc that will leave your jaw drop once you get passed The Governor’s introduction.

3. Vol 11- Fear The Hunters (issues 61-66; 2009)

This Volume introduces the second main antagonist group called The Hunters. They are lead by a man named Chris (Gareth on the TV show) and the way they survive is by eating other humans. Yes you just read that, they are canibals. The Hunters tried to take down The Survivors for food but they manager to get only one of them which was Dale. They chopped off and ate his leg without realizing that he was bitten by a zombie a few hours earlier. Rick and the group managed to find them and kill them and sliced their bodies apart and burning them. Also, it was in this arc that Father Gabriel debuted, Bill killing his brother, and the death of Dale. By the end of this arc, Carl revealed to rick that he has killed Bill.

2. Vol 14- No Way Out (issues 79-84; 2010-2011)

Rick and his new community are in terrible danger when a herd of roamers take down a section of what was thought to be sturdy wall. Just when they thought they had found a tiny modicum of security, everything begins to fall apart. This herd is one of the biggest threats that they have faced in a long time, and not everyone will make it out unscathed. During this arc, Walkers floods the streets of Alexandria, Morgan dies after being bitten, Carl got shot at his eye and much more crazy stuff happens. The group in this arc was down but that did not stop them from killing every zombie that invaded Alexandria. Also when this volume started back in 2010, the TV Show of The Walking Dead aired for the first time.

Honorable Mentions:

Vol 28-A Certain Doom (issues 163-168; 2017)

Vol 18-What Comes After (issues 103-108; 2012-2013)

Vol 26-Call To Arms (Issues 151-156; 2016)

Vol 22- A New Beginning (issues 127-132; 2014)

Vol 4-The Heart’s Desire (issues 19-24; 2005)

1. Vol 17- Something To Fear (issues 97-102; 2012)

If you would like to know where did Negan made his first appearance, it is in this story arc (or Issue 100 if you buy the single issues). Rick and the group had no idea what they were up against when they decided to kill some of The Saviors. If you thought that The Governor was evil, you have not seen nothing yet. Negan and his Saviors are haunting and they showed Rick that they were to be taken seriously at all times. Some highlights include Dwight killing Abraham and Negan killing everyone’s fan favorite, Glenn. My jaw dropped when i first read issue 100 5 years ago as i could not believe what i have just saw. I would recommend everyone to read this entire arc to see how it went down.

Sonic Mania Review

I have no idea what the hell went on with Sonic. Gone are days of creativity, endless hours of fun, and the basic love of rings. Instead, we’ve gotten Poorly Design Sonic (Sonic the Hedgehog 2006), Make it Stop Sonic (Sonic Unleashed) Vertigo Sonic (Sonic Generations), Steroids Sonic (Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric)

So when I heard SEGA was giving Sonic another spin, I cried unto the heavens screaming “why?” I hung my head in shame for what I expected would be one of the biggest gaming mistakes in 2017. It’s not often that I’m proven wrong, and it even less often that I’m willing to admit my mistakes, but this is a special case for a special game that has already captured my heart and won’t let my childhood memories die.

Sonic Mania is beautiful from the very beginning. Captivating my soul, it starts off with a 2D animation sequence that transports me to a world of the 90s and I’m a kid again… before everything went to crazy. However, Sonic Mania is more than a game. It’s a “thank you” for “hanging with SEGA despite the numerous times we’ve screwed you over.” It’s forgiveness for all the terrible things that have happened before. Though they can never promise they won’t do it again (Sonic Forces has yet to be released) here is a metaphoric rainbow.

Even the name, Sonic Mania is a perfect way to describe this game. Merriam-Webster defines “mania” as: periods of great excitement and euphoria. an excessive enthusiasm or desire; an obsession.

It’s a rare treat to see a game like this fall perfectly into this category. Why? Because while Sonic may have been created by SEGA, it feels like it was created by Sonic fans which technically is true. Developed by people who originally created Sonic fan projects, they’ve painstakingly created a homage to their childhood while adding in fresh ideas and clever gaming with an old-school flair.

As a massive fan of art, there was something special about the 16-bit Sonic and those bold bright colors. It never felt like it was trying too hard for your attention, instead, it was a sign of prestige and honor. From the very beginning, Mania has that same feeling when those bright and beautifully bold colors splash onto the screen like a Jackson Pollack painting. It whisks you away to Green Hill Zone where those familiar loops and golden rings await to be collected.

While previous Sonic games encouraged speed which often resulted in disaster for me, Mania takes the controlled chaos route. Yes, there are those uncertain crazy loops but the game also encourages you to take your time and explore. By slowing down, I’ve discovered newly added sections, secret coin locations, and opportunities to interact with the expanded environment (hey there, sexy wood chipper). There were moments when I was so lost in the game that I forgot that I had to complete the level. Once I did, I was greeted by another level that was even better than the last.

As a lover of movies and TV shows, I fell in love with the new Studiopolis level. Bouncing on film reels was a delight and the flashbulbs and music felt like a throwback to old Hollywood. Despite the randomness of the level’s inclusion, Sonic never felt out of place and the setting came off like an extension of the original game with even more exciting adventures to come.

One of my favorite new levels is easily the breathtakingly gorgeous Press Garden, which can only be described as magical. Light colors fill the screen as everything is covered with pink, airy and light colors. While I’m not a girly-girl, I was taken aback and enthralled with the level of charm that poured through my screen. Compared to Studiopolis’ darker, jazzy and more adult feel, Press Garden was screaming to whisk my troubles away onto the pink leaves that floated around Sonic. There were moments when I had to stop and just marvel at the game’s details, which quickly prompted Sonic to stare at me with his side-eye and the original “gurl, bye” foot tap (man, did I miss that stare).

As I continued playing, I noticed how easy it was to control Sonic. Previous games often made me feel reckless. Unable to figure out how to handle the controls, I would often crash into things, lose all my rings and spend wasted minutes memorizing how to jump. This game, however, even managed to get the controls right. Tapping into sense memory, Sonic was able to perform all of the commands without any issues. In fact, if I closed my eyes, I would have guessed I was playing on the SEGA Genesis.

Boss battles are the most delightful as they prove most innovative. While there are classic robots, SEGA has built upon their design and how each battle is executed, which keeps the game and each level refreshing. Ranging from weird to “wait.. what?,” there are puzzles, pattern memorization, wind speed, shooting and more. It’s very hard for me to pick my favorite battle because each one deserves to be recognized.

Sonic Mania is not perfect. Even though the good outweighs the bad, there are some frustrations and complications. Mania is much harder than those of yesteryear. While death is not an often occurrence because the boss battles are “unique,” there are moments where death is immediate. As a result, the game landed me back to the beginning, making me complete the stage again. Despite the stage checkpoints, through a series of trial and error, this was a common and annoying occurrence, which can be argued isn’t necessarily the game’s fault but something of my own failing.

Sonic Mania should be the reason why developers reboot games, not just because of money, but to witness how happy games make people. Instead of ripping the original formula apart, reboots should build upon a game success. It reminds people why they fell in love with gaming, while also introducing a new generation to that same passion a game can create. Sonic Mania does both and more, it’s a game that will have you fighting to play with others and possibly your kids. The last Sonic game i have enjoyed very well was Sonic Generations but before that game, you would have to take me back to 1994 for Sonic and Knuckles. I give this game a 9.5 out of 10

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Sonic Mania preview

I was able to cover Sweet Suite’s Blogger Bash NY 2017 this past week and i have seen a very lot of toy previews and demos. There was also one table for SEGA and i have tried the upcoming Sonic Mania video game. I have been looking forward to this game since it was announced last year and i was happy that i tried it. 


The game emulates the gameplay and 2D sprite animation of the original Sega Genesis Sonic games. In this game, you can choose between Sonic, Tails and Knuckles. On the demo that i have played, only Sonic was avaliable and i was shown two stages. One is a remastered Green Hill Zone which has a few noticable differences as you play along during the stage, and the other is a new stage called Studiopolis Zone. Studiopolis is a more challenging stage and i had fun trying it. It took me almost 5 minutes to complete it but anyone who tries a new stage in any game will take some time to get used to it. 

In addition to the standard Spin Jump, Spin Attack and Spin Dash maneuvers, Sonic Mania introduces the Drop Dash, which allows the player to instantly dash into a Spin Attack upon landing from a jump. Also, the shields from the past Sonic games return in this game and some of them has effects that can affect an stage such as the flame shield burning away spiked bridges in the Green Hill Zone.



Overall, i cannot wait to try the full version of this game when it releases next month for the PS4, XBOX ONE and Steam. There is also an collectors edition for anyone who preorders the game. I have not been anticipating an Sonic video game since Sonic Generations and i love that game.

 

I have also taken photos of some of the cool merchandise line as well. check them out.


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Super NES mini Classic announced 


Slated for a launch on September 29th, the Super NES Classic Edition is a console kit similar to the original console that launched more than 20 years ago. Like the NES Classic edition that came before it, the new Super NES allows you to play retro Nintendo games in high-definition, over HDMI with two included wired controllers.

Nintendo will pre-install the following 21 classic games:
Contra III: The Alien Wars™
Donkey Kong Country™

EarthBound™

Final Fantasy III

F-ZERO™

Kirby™ Super Star

Kirby’s Dream Course™

The Legend of Zelda™: A Link to the Past™

Mega Man® X

Secret of Mana

Star Fox™

Star Fox™ 2 (released for the first time ever)

Street Fighter® II Turbo: Hyper Fighting

Super Castlevania IV™

Super Ghouls ’n Ghosts®

Super Mario Kart™

Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars™

Super Mario World™

Super Metroid™

Super Punch-Out!! ™

Yoshi’s Island™

The Super NES Classic Edition launches on Sept. 29 at a retail price of $79.99, starting with direct availability from Nintendo. 

AMC’s The Walking Dead Monopoly Review

It seems there is no end to Monopoly being re-branded by popular shows and what’s the current next big thing. Catering to nearly every fad there are literally hundreds of variations and that is just the known and official one’s alone.

So how many times can the brand re-brand before people do not want to buy it anymore or lose interest. Never it would seem.One of the latest examples of Television show inspired re-branded Monopoly sets is the extremely popular, The Walking Dead series. Being a huge fan of the TV show i was delighted to see this back at the Toy Fair NY a few months back, and now i can finally review it after getting a review sample.

I handled this set with care as i studied this beautifully designed box, taking caution get scratched, cut or bitten by the packaging. It looks just like it has jumped right out of the AMC series along with using pictures from the television show’s characters and key locations such as Rick’s house, Hershel’s barn, The Prison, Terminus, Alexandria, The Hilltop, The Kingdom, The Sanctuary and much more.

Monopoly Pieces


The amount of character pieces seems to vary throughout the variations of Monopoly sets. This version comes with six playable pieces. Carl’s Hat, Rick’s Python Revolver. a Katana (Michonne’s sword), Lucille (barbed wire wrapped around a bat), Daryl’s Crossbow and a Walker’s head.

The board as you expect is completely re worked to relate to the series apart from the four corner squares which would not be Monopoly without them. The classic GO, IN JAIL/JUST VISITING, FREE PARKING AND GO TO JAIL!


Chance and community chest have appropriately been renamed as Survivor and Walker Each card has a small image from the TV Show and like the original Monopoly, an event, command or a consequence, but with it’s own take to liaise with the series.

Houses and hotels are still available but these are now known as walls and guard towers. Appropriate to relate to the series.

This is a game I am very excited to play against friends with as playing by yourself isn’t as fun, and a lot of my friends are just as much as big a zombie fanatics as myself. Heck I may even get into character and be a bat swinging gun slinging mad man with only survival to fight for. And should I get turned I’d better not bite any friends as I would have no-one left to play this awesome game with.


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Injustice 2 review

Injustice 2 follows on from the Injustice Gods Among us story. This time seeing team Batman vs Team Superman call a break to take on a deadlier approaching foe, Brainiac. Injustice 2 brings a slew of new characters to the fold. The thrilling story continues were better graphics and battle styles. But does it have enough to keep you coming back?

Gameplay

What surprises you at first is that for a fighting game the Injustice series has done pretty well in terms of delivering an A class comic book story that is actually an interesting narrative that keeps you glued to the screen. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t surprised when I checked the time and noticed that I had lost track of time because of how engaged in the story I was. Injustice 2 and NetherRealm once again deliver a beautiful and engaging fighting game, one that could see people like myself who aren’t usually into fighting games, suddenly finding themselves thinking twice thanks to a compelling story, which you don’t often see in fighting games.

Story aside Injustice 2 is an excellent fighting game brought to us once again from NetherRealm Studios, who are the team behind Mortal Kombat. Combat is fast and fun and depending on your expertise level when it comes to fighters, each character now also tailors to how players handle a fight. I found myself a fan of using both Green Arrow and Flash as I felt their combos were easier to perform. Green Lantern on the other hand came off as a bit more of a challenge for me. Combos are the key to winning here, which is especially so at the online front of the game. On several occasions, I would find myself in a match where I was way over my head, but more on the multiplayer section later. Matches are filled with other environmental objects to help you take down your opponent. You can also destroy the environment sending your opponent through walls or other objects which then takes you to a sub part of that arena to fight in. A lot of what was present in Gods Among Us has been kept around in terms of world destruction and set up.

Injustice 2 handles a lot like its predecessor in terms of gameplay mechanics. You still have your special ability of sorts that sees each character perform some sort of chain of attacks in a cutscene. These are performed after filling your super meter, which can also be drained when performing other combos. I have to say that I wish there was more than just the one cutscene/special ability per character. Grows old seeing the same thing repeatedly. Especially when you can perform a special ability twice in a match, it would be good just to see more variety is all.

Thankfully though when it comes to variety Injustice 2’s character customization section is fantastic. From special suit accessories to the colour of the suit, you can make your favourite character to play your very own for the multiplayer section. Injustice 2 now includes a microtransaction system for anyone who may be interested in paying real life money to collect character specific items quicker than grinding for them. Players can buy source crystals with their own money to purchase certain other items to change the look of your favourite fighters. These are of course optionable. You don’t need to spend money. These are just for the players that want get them sooner than later.

Multiplayer

This is where the game really opens up. I do advise completing the single player story first however as it helps you get a feel for each character and helps level them up and by completing each chapter you are rewarded mother boxes. Mother boxes contain items of clothing or appearances for each character. There are several types of mother boxes and each contains a certain level of rarity for special stat carrying clothes and weapons. They also have levels so don’t go thinking you can use an epic bow on Green Arrow when you’ve just started playing online. There’s some work to be done first. It pays to work hard as each new article of clothing or accessory that you unlock from a mother box can help increase a certain stat for your character. These stats help you when you go against other players of the same level. You are also able to customize your card with different art works., much like Call of Duty for example. You also display your win/loss record so try not to perform poorly or your friends may see how good or bad you really are.

Graphics and Sound

Injustice 2 is a gorgeous game and the character designs are more stunning than its predecessor, including the world designs and clever use of arena objects that can be used as weapons. A lot of love has been put into the attention to detail here and it shows in every scene during the story and other offline and online fights. Injustice 2 has also some impressive voice actors. The great Kevin Conroy is back to voice as Batman which is always a treat to hear, as well as several DC voice actor veterans. While not getting into the story but as someone who reads the Injustice comics as well it was awesome to see it play out on screen and once again as it was beautifully presented.

Overall

Injustice 2 is a fantastic sequel to a much-loved universe. Another fantastic story is told while exceptional gameplay accompanies it. Injustice 2 is a gorgeous sequel that delivers on all fronts. While the story felt a little short to me and some of the ultimate attacks feel like they still could use some variation, I enjoyed my time here. Injustice 2 comes in a year chock full of Fighting games coming out left and right and I can say without a doubt that Injustice 2 deserves a spot on any comic fan or fighting fans gaming shelf.

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Prey Review

Arkane have, in just a short amount of time, mastered their craft. The Dishonored games did a great job at throwing a bunch of tools at the player and letting them navigate rich deep worlds the way they want to. Prey feels the same, only amplified. Trading in swords and spirits for guns and neurological enhancements, Prey could be construed as Arkane’s take on science fiction. It hits some pretty familiar beats throughout, but Prey feels like a natural evolution of the Arkane trademark formula.


Prey itself takes place in an alternate timeline where John F Kennedy survived the assassination attempt in 1963, in turn directing more funding into the space program and sending us into space much earlier. In Prey, you are Morgan Yu, an employee for Transtar who presently owns the research space station Talos-1. Morgan wakes up with little to no memory of his past, but discovers that he himself is intrinsically tied to the station and its bizarre alien research.

 Prey-Screen-CorpsePrey’s storyline sounds pretty cliché and at times it is, though the story isn’t afraid to head into stranger directions than you’d normally expect. As the game began I wasn’t too keen to progress in the story, instead exploring the space station at my own leisure. Though as I got further in, Prey threw some twists at me that hooked me on the ideas it was selling. Despite this, I still found the playable character somewhat unlikable and the main villain quite forgettable. Still, Prey’s story hits the right beats at the right time to pique players’ interests. Think of it as a warped combination: Memento meets Dead Space meets BioShock.

When you play the first hour or so of Prey, more seasoned gamers will see where the game draws inspiration. You’re on a space station, it’s falling apart, you start off with a wrench, you use powers to defend yourself called psionics and you’re being lead along by a faceless or mysterious voice. Prey is woven from strong genes – taking inspiration from Dead Space, Dishonored, System Shock and BioShock. It’s a first-person game that isn’t afraid to have moments of quiet time to let you explore the sprawling space station that is Talos-1 at your own pace and leisure.

That’s really the name of the game with Prey. It’s an open world, that lets you explore areas of the space station in (almost) whatever order you wish. Everything is connected, whether you want to naturally get to an area using the winding corridors of the space station or you want to leave the station and re-enter it elsewhere while floating in space. Prey’s densely packed world, shortcuts and connections all come together to give the game a sense of having an open world without the barren filler environments that commonly come with it.

When you’re navigating the world of Prey you’ll be outfitted with a variety of abilities, weapons and powers that let you approach the playground of Talos-1 the way you want to. Most weapons serve a dual purpose – they can also be used to create platform on the walls to circumvent obstacles, or activate buttons from a short distance away. Each weapon having multiple uses encourages experimentation, as well as thinking outside of the box.

When you’re done with Prey once, I’d be surprised if you didn’t want to jump into it again. Not only because you’ll probably miss something while trying to explore the sprawling Talos-1 station, but also because you can change the outcome of the game based on your treatment of others throughout the story. It’s nothing totally revolutionary, but given Prey’s flexible systems, running through a second time is bound to be different to your first, intentional or not.

Your play style will greatly decide how long it’ll take you to run through Prey, though I’d estimate most players would get at least fifteen to twenty hours out of their first run. Perhaps even more if they explored the station thoroughly. This much is certain: Prey is a game that just begs to be played at least once more once you’ve finished it.

Taking a page out of Dishonored’s book, Prey features a stylised art style to bring its world to life. The result is something that never looks hyper-realistic but something more distinctive instead. Artistically speaking, Prey brings together retro designs with futuristic ones to create something not unlike BioShock’s Art Deco style. From a technical standpoint, the game is running on CryEngine which brings with it the usual caveats for consoles – namely longer than desirable load times. It’s not the best-looking game, especially compared to others, but Prey does its own thing and it does its own thing well.

Prey’s world is run down yet colourful, and the soundtrack perfectly complements the experience. Composed by Mick Gordon, the score is filled with sublime synth beats and strange, otherworldly noises and sound effects to create something eerie, atmospheric and tense. These pieces do an amazing job at elevating the already strong atmosphere aboard Talos-1, and is quite possibly one of the strongest soundtracks I’ve ever heard in a game.

Prey is another win for Arkane. It’s a game where everyone who plays it will have a different experience. One thing is certain though – that Prey remains a consistent experience from beginning to end. Providing players with intuitive gameplay systems with great synergy, freedom to approach combat how you want and game design that rewards creativity are just three ways that Prey succeeds. While BioShock was heralded as the spiritual successor to System Shock, Prey feels like a much more successful attempt. An absolute joy to play and experience.

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